Offaly face Tipperary this Saturday in their second group game in the Liberty Insurance Senior Championship knowing a win would leave them in pole position to take a spot in the knock out stages with one game to go.
Offaly opened their campaign with an impressive win away to Dublin and that victory will have boosted their confidence ahead of this weekend’s game against their Munster neighbours.
Aidan Franks’ side will go in as favourites given that they recorded a 4-10 to 0-6 victory when the sides met in the league in late March. However Offaly will have to guard against complacency as a defeat on Saturday would leave them needing a win in their last game against Cork to advance.
Offaly will be without their injured captain Arlene Watkins for the game as she recovers from an ankle injury while Karen Connolly is struggling with a hand injury.
However minors Rachel Brennan and Ann Marie Gunian, who both found the back of the net against Dublin, have stepped up well to the senior ranks while established Sheila Sullivan, Michaela Morkan, Aoife Kelly and Elaine Dermody were in fine form against Dublin and they will form the spine of the team.
Tipperary lost by 13 points in their opening game against Cork and they know that a defeat this Saturday would leave them in a very difficult position in the group. They lost all four of their games in the league and while they overcame Limerick in the Munster Senior Championship, they lost out to Cork in the provincial decider.
Offaly will fancy their chances of putting back to back wins together in the championship as they look to make the knock out stages. Tipperary will provide a stiff challenge and are in a must win situation but Offaly should prove too strong.